Panasonic HX-WA10 – full HD 1080p
Waterproof camcorders are ideal for outdoorsy types who want to capture videos while out in the wild without the worry of their precious gadgets getting damaged, but they’re also perfect for a relaxing holiday as they can join you for a dip in the pool without any ill effects.
The Panasonic HX-WA10 offers full HD recording at up to 1080p, plus there’s an HDMI output hidden behind a lockable compartment for easy connection to a TV in the hotel bedroom. In case you’re staying in a budget chain that hasn’t upgraded to HD TVs, there’s a standard AV out through USB – and the relevant connector is in the box.
Snap 2 MP stills while recording
The HX-WA10 is very fast in use, producing excellent results, while the screen, with its rotating hinge, helps when waving it around at funny angles.
The Panasonic's 1080p video is certainly better than any you’ll find on a mobile phone, but out of the water it still struggles with areas of high detail such as grass, tree leaves and moving water. Depending on which resolution you’re filming in, the HX-WA10 will simultaneously capture still shots at up to 2MP while recording video.
HX-WA10 – how well does it work underwater?
Colour recreation is excellent, and it does a nice job of capturing movement smoothly – even underwater.
However, it’s not well suited to extreme watersport situations, as the main controls are clustered together in a big lump on the back of the lens. This combination of thumb-operated buttons also feels a little spongy, so you need to pause to look at what you’re doing.
Still, the build quality is great, plus there’s a 12x combined optical and digital zoom so you needn’t get too close to the sharks and/or jellyfish.
While the controls may be a little clunky, particularly for more action-packed situations, the HX-WA10 offers superb video quality up to 1080p. Panasonic’s water-friendly camcorder also gets points for its handy rotating screen.
If picture quality is more important than usability, this is a winner